12 Mar 2007

Tonga's finance minister announces proposed changes to tax system

11:05 am on 12 March 2007

Tonga's finance minister has announced changes to the tax system which will help low income earners.

Siosiua Utoikamanu says the changes follow consultation with the public and private sectors last year .

Despite the difficult economic circumstances ahead, the Finance Minister says he did not want to create more harm by charging taxes that adversely affect the poor.

He said he wanted to ensure the most vulnerable in society, the low income earners, women and youth, were protected.

Under the proposals to go before Parliament when it resumes sitting, the tax threshold will be increased from 12 hundred to nearly four thousand US dollars.

All income over nearly 15 thousand US dollars will be taxed at 20 per cent